YMMV / Who Framed Roger Rabbit


  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: A nonlethal version. Even if you thought Roger was annoying, it's really hard to not feel sorry for him after he's told Jessica was caught playing patty-cake with Acme and looks over their pictures in his wallet with a heartbroken expression.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Jessica's "You have no idea what it's like being a woman looking the way I do" line: Was she talking about men ogling her... or people not taking her seriously because she's a toon? Or maybe both?
  • Animation Age Ghetto: Defied. This Film Noir "tale of greed, sex, and murder" is very much not for kids (and to further set this so, was released under the Touchstone Pictures banner). This film may have been designed to dismantle the Animation Age Ghetto.
  • Award Snub: Bob Hoskins spends much of the movie talking to cartoons while pulling off a comedic while troubled character with a flawless New York accent. (Keep in mind acting with cartoons is significant because he had to act against air and voice actors NOT in his eyeline to film scenes with cartoons).
    • The film itself was omitted from Best Picture and Best Director nominations (even though Robert Zemeckis was able to earn recognition from the Directors' Guild of America), likely stemming from a bias against its cartoon elements. The film ended up tying Best Picture winner Rain Man for most wins at the Oscars that year (4), which can either be seen as a way of lessening the Award Snub or exacerbating it.
  • Awesome Art: Seriously, LOOK AT THE THING!!!
  • Awesome Music: No surprise, as we have Alan Silvestri to thank, but this is possibly one of his best scores ever. Smile, darn ya, smile!
  • Base Breaker: Roger Rabbit, himself. Some find him to be funny and adorable, while others seem to find him annoying like Jar Jar Binks.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment:
    • Quite a lot of toons come and go after one scene with minor to no effect on the plot and are never mentioned again. Most notably, the Ducks' piano duel.
    • And the deleted scene that's sometimes added back in, depending on where you're watching the movie. That was just weird.
  • Captain Obvious Reveal: With his menacing, ruthless demeanor; his cruel, abusive behavior; the dreadful, eerie score that accompanies him and the fact that you see him straight-up KILL a Toon during his introductory scene, who would've thought Judge Doom would be the Big Bad?
    • Zig Zagged hard. Judge Doom being a Toon is indeed a surprise, but some foreshadowing waters down the shock. The fact Eddie wasn't all that surprised should tell you this. However, The Reveal that he is the same Toon who killed Eddie's brother is effectively shocking and disturbing.
  • Complete Monster: Judge Doom is the sadistic and merciless high judge of Toontown, and a staunch anti-toon bigot. Since toons can't be killed in any way, Doom invented a solution called the Dip and is introduced demostrating its effects by melting an innocent toon-shoe. When Roger Rabbit is accused of murder Doom starts a ruthless hunt, reveling in the thought of melting him in the Dip regardless if he's guilty or not and showing full willingless to harm or kill anyone who stands in his way, either himself or by letting his brutal weasel henchmen do it. Doom himself was the mind behind the murder, along with RK Maroon's who tried to report him. His Evil Plan is to commit a massive toon genocide by spraying Dip over Toontown in order to build a freeway and owning all the profits. The worst part, however, is that Doon is a toon himself and the one responsible for Private Detective Eddie Valiant's hate towards the toons since he's the one who killed his brother long ago by smashing him with a piano. During the final battle Doom attemps to kill Eddie, along with Roger and his wife Jessica, by cutting him in half with a buzzsaw grinning evilly all the time. Despite the lighthearted nature of the movie, Doom is a shockingly dark and frightening villain.
  • Dancing Bear: The movie was sold on the spectacle of animated and live action characters seamlessly integrated across a cameo-laden full-length feature film. As it turns out, this worked great, the writing and acting were strong enough to carry it off, and the movie was and is considered to be pretty good.
  • Draco in Leather Pants:
    • A big part of the popularity of the Toon Patrol is that their coolness in being the bad boy causes them to be viewed as attractive in fangirl eyes.
    • Averted with Judge Doom, whose only reactions is trauma and terror despite being a cool villain likely due to his true Toon nature.
  • Ear Worm: The jazz music subtly playing in the background of most scenes.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • The entire Toon Patrol has a surprisingly large fanbase. Admittedly most of them are Furry Fans but for villainous characters who not only never get named, but also don't even survive the movie, Smart Ass and his squad sure have a lot of fans.
  • Genius Bonus:
    • The Dip is made of chemicals (turpentine, acetone and benzene) which are widely used as cleaners to dissolve dried oil paints and India inks of the type used on animation cels of the period. They were what were used to clean animation cels for later reuse.
    • Those familiar with Arthurian mythology will spot the connection behind Eddie grabbing the Singing Sword: That particular blade was the weapon of choice of Sir Valiant.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • In one scene, Jessica Rabbit tells Eddie Valiant, "I'm not bad, I'm just drawn that way." Imagine that after 23 years, one defense lawyer said the same thing about Amanda Knox when comparing her with Jessica during the appeals trial in that she was no Femme Fatale. Amazingly, it was the same "Jessica Rabbit" defense that got Knox and her co-defendant cleared of murder.
    • Twice, there are lines that can be construed as referring to films released later in The Renaissance Age of Animation; one is the weasels' hyena cousins, and the other is a throwaway line about Quasimodo. These films would not be released for six to eight years, and naturally were not actually being referencednote , but it adds a level of depth to the film to work in movies that hadn't been released yet.
    • Daffy Duck riffing on Donald Duck's speech impediment sounds like Hypocritical Humor, but there is some Reality Subtext there. Mel Blanc once said in an interview, he always hated Donald Duck's voice, and said a character where you can rarely tell what they're saying was a total waste.
    • Judge Doom's creepy eyes. Old habits die hard, eh Zemeckis?
    • Early on, Eddie Valiant asks for a "scotch on the rocks" from a toon bartender, adding "...and I mean ice!" when he belatedly remembers how Literal-Minded they are, discovering later that he was too late and picks stones out of his drink. You can now buy rocks that are specifically for freezing and keeping an alcoholic drink cold without worrying about melting ice watering the beverage down.
    • A story produced by Disney incognito and set in a City Noir, about a Private Detective with a Dark and Troubled Past who must confront a depraved, superpowered mutant who is the primary cause of our antihero's Dark and Troubled Past (and whose actor is also known for playing a beloved time-traveling doctor)? And one of the main characters is an attractive woman named Jessica? Where have I seen this before? Best summarized here.
    • Jessica saying that she loved Roger more than any woman's ever loved a rabbit is a lot funnier and more risque since Sex and the City popularized Vibratex' "Rabbit Pearl" vibrator.
  • He Really Can Act: As mentioned under Award Snub, it's easy to forget that Bob Hoskins spends 95% of the movie talking to invisible characters. All of the special effects in the movie wouldn't have worked if not for his dedicated performance.
  • Ho Yay: Between Roger Rabbit and Eddie. They kiss, twice.
  • Hype Backlash: The general opinion is that it's a great film that kickstarted a new era of animation being recognized as art as well as entertainment, but there are professionals and fans who blame Spielberg for changing a cottage industry into a corporate giant (albeit still one with a small reference pool) that doesn't allow for new talent and only cares about making money and selling tickets.
  • It Was His Sled: Judge Doom is the Toon that killed Eddie's brother.
    • The fact that Roger's wife isn't another cartoon rabbit but a sexy cartoon woman is supposed to be a surprise, but virtually nobody sees Jessica's first appearance unspoiled.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "I'm not bad. I'm just drawn that way."
    • "Remember me, Eddie? When I killed your brother, I talked JUST... LIKE... THISSS!!"
    • The scene in the speakeasy where Eddie and Roger keep bumping into the hanging lamp lead to the expression "bump the lamp" amongst animators when they want to push their animation a little further.
  • Misaimed Marketing: This board game where you throw toons into dip.
  • Moral Event Horizon: The death of the cartoon shoe that just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time clearly shows how far over the horizon Judge Doom and his minions are.
    • Doom already crossed it in the past when he killed Eddie's brother.
  • Narm: "Oh. My. God! It's DIIIIIIIIIP!"
  • Nausea Fuel: Lena Hyena.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • The toon bullets who help Eddie in his search for Roger before entering Toontown.
    • Lena Hyena has only 40 seconds of total screen time.
    • The two ducks, Donald and Daffy.
    • Droopy as the elevator attendant is also particularly memorable.
  • The Problem with Licensed Games: The Game Boy version is decent enough (interestingly, Roger solves his own case with the help of his ever-present magnifying glass), but the NES game is infamous for two reasons: the "phone number" Eddie uncovers to call Jessica Rabbit which, when dialed, is supposed to provide players with a clue, is currently a 1-900 number. And two, it was developed by Rare, making it an Old Shame to boot due to their pre-Nintendo days being associated with three, LJN Toys, who was and still in notorious for publishing games that enforced this trope; The Angry Video Game Nerd looked at the game twice and discovered the phone number and a bonus with it detailed below on his second try.
    Soltenga: The original intent of the number has long since been discontinued in lieu of a sex chat hotline, but that's arguably a more preferable idea to playing this game.
  • Signature Scene: Doom's reveal as a Toon is a terrifying and memorable scene. To some there's also the scene featuring Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny, likely because it is probably the only time those two animation icons will share a scene together.
    • The reason Mickey and Bugs are always together is because in getting agreements for the characters to be on screen, Disney and Warner Brother demanded they receive equal screen time.
  • Special Effects Failure: Given the reliance on effects, a few slip-ups were inevitable.
    • When Valiant finds Roger in his bed, the edge stays pressed down like Roger is leaning on it when he isn't, then suddenly pops back up several seconds later.
    • When Roger chases after Raul, begging to do the "refrigerator-on-the-head" scene one more time, Raul's coat sleeve floats to Roger's hand a tiny bit too early, leading to some viewers joking that Roger has The Force.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: After spending the first two acts of the movie as an important interesting supporting character, Dolores just disappeared in the final two arcs and completely lost plot relevance until the very end.
  • Uncanny Valley:
    • An intentional case, Judge Doom's real eyes. By all accounts, it worked.
    • Even before the big reveal, Doom's appearance and mannerisms are... off. The makeup job applied to Lloyd made his skin appear to not be quite real somehow, and the stiffness of his movements and the stiltedness of his expressions were all designed to call attention to the fact that there was something just not right about the character. There's also the fact that his cape is always fluttering slightly even when there is no wind. Christopher Lloyd was given specific instructions never to blink on camera; as a result any time you see his eyes, they always have this unnatural stare.
    • As great as the animation is, it's being almost entirely on ones can make it appear a little too fluid and a little hard on the eyes after a while. Justified in that it has to match up to the live footage, which is also 24 fps.
  • Villain Decay: This is more of a Base Breaker, but when Doom is revealed to be a Toon, he is either viewed as becoming less threatening as a villain, however others argue that that he becomes more terrifying, especially with his hellishly high-pitched voice and eyes.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: No, seriously, we mean it, LOOK! AT! THIS! GOD! DAMNED! THING!
    • All the animation was done the old-fashioned way: hand-drawn on paper, 98% on ones, then painted on real cels, and then sent off to ILM to be optically composited, along with separately-animated shadows and highlights, into the live-action footage!
    • All of the effects are practical: every single prop or piece of scenery being manipulated by a toon, from Roger running through a window to make a Roger-shaped hole to the piano playing to something as innocuous as a toon lifting a drink to their mouth, required either highly-skilled puppeteers or a machine invented solely for that movement to be placed on-set as a stand-in for the non-existant toon!
      • And with the exception of the blue-screened Toon Town, not one computer was used!note 
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: Where do we even start? In general, the whole film feels like an attempt to tear down the Animation Age Ghetto, what with the Double Entendres out the wazoo. Also has the most frightening reveal in an animated film yet. The general assumption is that the movie would've gotten a PG-13 rating had it been released today, and it did in fact get a TV-14 rating when it aired on ABC Family.
  • The Woobie:
    • Poor Roger; the guy gets yanked around by everybody for the whole movie, and although he's a bit wacky after actually going to Toon Town he comes off as rather mild mannered and sweet.
    • That poor little toon shoe.
    • Jerkass Woobie: Eddie Valiant. Yeah, he's alcholic, grumpy and rude. But seeing his tragic backstory where his brother has been killed by a toon - a fact who turned him into a depressive lonely man in contrast to the great Toontown detective he used to be - that shouldn't be a surprise.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/WhoFramedRogerRabbit